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Even a label that goes by the slogan "the home of insurgent country" pushes their boundaries for these gonzo, stripped-down rockabilly blues folks. With horror-movie vocals by frontman "Colonel" J.D Wilkes straight out of the Lux Interior school and a hardcore, ragged combination of frayed blues, twisted bluegrass, and ornery swamp, this is a full-frontal assault that doesn't let up until the whole thing collapses after just over a half-hour. Their frantic, heart-pounding attack on the blues standard "Bullfrog Blues" with Wilkes' overdriven harmonica and ear-wincing screams is enough to scare most blues fans off, and a similar take on their own "Devil's Night Auction" with manic Jew's harp and carnival accordion will do the same for mountain music lovers. Originals such as "Help Me From My Brain" and "Blood on the Bluegrass" accurately indicate their inspiration. Wilkes also blows serious harp on "CB Song," a track that could easily slot on a Southern Culture on the Skids album. And covering fringe rockabilly raver Benny Joy's "Wild Wild Lover" -- a tune also done by the Flat Duo Jets and the A-Bones -- gives you an idea of this band's influences. In this context, their hopped-up garage blues take on Slim Harpo's "Shake Your Hips" sounds tame in comparison. The music is fun, frantic, and nerve-wracking, just the way they want it. The Bloodshot reissue adds an extra track, "Hunkerdown," that fuels a more Cramps-styled flavor to their approach.
Performance CreditsLegendary Shack Shakers Primary Artist
Colonel J.D. Wilkes Banjo,Harmonica,Keyboards,Vocals,Melodeon,Group Member
Donnie Herron Track Performer
Joe Buck Banjo,Guitar,Mandolin,Accordion,Drums,Upright Bass,Group Member
Technical CreditsColonel J.D. Wilkes Arranger,Producer,Artwork
Eric McConnell Producer
Joe Buck Arranger,Producer
David T. Viecelli Booking